Shortage and cost of rented accommodation is causing problems for hotel staff in summer. | Daniel Espinosa

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The Majorca Hoteliers Federation presented a report at London's World Travel Market which considered the impact of holiday rentals. It drew attention to exorbitant rents during the tourism season which led to more than 10,000 employees having to travel an average of 80 kilometres in all to work and back.

This situation will repeat itself in 2017, with the number of holiday rentals in resort areas continuing to increase. The federation's president, Inma Benito, said that Alcudia, Arta, Can Picafort, Capdepera, Playa de Muro and Pollensa have been the most affected. In some instances, hotels had to organise their own bus services for staff.

Strong demand for holiday rentals, says the federation, is meaning that tenants' contracts are not being renewed so that between May and September properties can be rented out at much higher prices. Benito stressed that tourism should create social value and not problems such as accommodation shortages for workers. The federation has therefore requested that the government introduces a plan of control that would involve the Tax Agency, land registry, island councils, town halls and the tourism ministry.

Benito added that the federation is not against holiday rentals but wants specific regulation to determine what accommodation is residential and what is for tourists. She urged the government to introduce legislation as quickly as possible (draft legislation had been expected last month).

The report also looked at the impact of tourism on social and economic progress in the Balearics. The federation believes that the tourism model currently creates a situation that is inefficient. There is no plan as such for what type of tourism future there should be. As for the tourist tax, this, according to the hoteliers, addresses existing weaknesses and not future challenges.